Episode 33 - Making Goals, and Checking Them Twice with Corey Gross

Episode 33 – Making Goals, and Checking Them Twice with Corey Gross

In this episode we’ll be talking with Corey Gross about setting goals for the new year, and reviewing some goals we set this time last year, and discussing how we did!

“‘Sharpening the Tools’ is the section of the show where we discuss what tools we’re using, concepts we’re learning, and generally how we are continuing our learning in software development.”————–


Looking into SSL certificates and why the one for my personal site has been having issues. Learning about CloudFlare to see if it’s a viable option/solution.


Web Application Security class at work – learning about OWASP Top Ten vulnerabilities.

OWASP Top 10 Vulnerabilities on Treehouse


Wes Bos ES6 For Everyone, Learn Node refresher (Webpack and Passport, really)

Syntax – Web Bos & Scott Tolinski’s podcast


“Opening the Toolbox”

Guest Intro:

Corey Gross is a web developer, tabletop gamer, Nintendo Switch evangelist, and Former Professional Nuisance to Dave Harned. He studied English Literature and Writing at the University of Pittsburgh, but immediately pivoted to web development within a year. He later earned a degree in Software Development from Bellevue University in Omaha, Nebraska while working his first dev job at a leading creative agency. Hopping from city to city, Corey’s currently back in his home town and working as a web developer in Philadelphia. Welcome to the show Corey!

Anything else our listeners should know about you?

I’ve invited Corey on the show to talk about a big audacious goal that he’s set for 2019, but before we get into that … Happy New Year everyone! As it happens this episode will be dropping on New Years Day, 2019! We hope you all had a safe and joyful holiday season, and now it’s time again to look ahead at a brand new year.


Let’s take a look and discuss goals we set last year (Episode 7 – wow!). How did we do?



  • Landing a new job by the end of January 2018
    • ✅Accepted my current job shortly after New Year’s and started on January 19th
  • Moving out of parent’s house (within 6 months of new job)
    • ✅Moved out within 9 months of starting the job, but I started looking to buy a house around 6 months after starting the job
  • Ongoing learning – finishing iOS track on Team Treehouse (end of 2017)
    • I’m still currently halfway through the track. I got distracted in learning other things and completing other courses



  • Dive deeper into Angular”
    • Although I have done a lot of Angular development this year, did I meet my goal? Not sure it was well defined – not specific or measurable
  • Achieve work goals / deliverables
    • ✅I did meet my work goals, and at performance review received an “exceeds expectations” ranking


Podcast Goals:

  • ✅Starting to bring guests on the show
  • ✅Wider range of content


SMART Goal Characteristics:

  • S – Specific (or Significant).
  • M – Measurable (or Meaningful).
  • A – Attainable (or Action-Oriented).
  • R – Relevant (or Rewarding).
  • T – Time-bound (or Trackable).


What are some new goals we have for 2019?

Corey set a “big hairy goal for 2019, let’s discuss! Corey, can you tell us a little bit about your plans?

I’m starting my own web agency with a buddy of mine from high school – one of the two Best Men at my wedding. We’re looking to do web design and development work in the Greater Philadelphia area. I’ve picked up a good bit of experience, some solid tips and tricks from several stints in the industry, and we’re ready to put our own spin on the creative agency.



  • Earn a raise and/or promotion by the end of 2019
    • First step is to talk to my supervisor about how my role has changed over the past year and why I deserve a raise, if one doesn’t come up by annual review time; possibly provide similar salary estimates for similar positions from Glassdoor etc. Although this may be challenging since I’m in a unique role.
    • In the meantime, look into ways of earning at least $100 of extra income per month
  • Attend at least 2 technical conferences in 2019
    • MCT is one I plan on attending



  • Prepare and submit a talk to a developer conference
    • Present draft talk at meetup in february
    • Write a blog on the topic JDT
    • Submit talk proposal to MCT (conf in September)
    • Other conferences?
  • Update my portfolio site with at least two new projects by July.


Where can we find Corey?:







You can reach us at helloworld@juniordevelopertoolbox.com

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